Figure 1: John from USA - CC-BY-2.0 Watch out, things break, stuff catches fire. Let’s talk about backups. Last post, I stated that I’m going to switch focus away from NixOS commentary. This is still the plan. Today, I am still committed to NixOS thanks to technical debt created - migrations aren’t for free. Until then, enjoy my NixOS posting :). Last fall, I wanted to reformat my laptop’s NixOS deployment from BTRFS (encased within LVM2 itself encased in LUKS) to a ZFS partition plus another swap partition.
Figure 1: The laptop that was having a bad day with NixOS 23.11 More upgrade gotchas. Shucks. If everything goes well, this will be my last NixOS post. Read on to understand my frustration just a little bit more. My main laptop is a Lenovo Ideapad Flex 5 — simple and cheap device. The keyboard stopped working in the early boot after upgrading to 23.11. The impact: I need to a USB keyboard around to unlock the device from a cold boot.
Figure 1: Official image for 23.11 Upgrading my workstation to 23.11 wasn’t as simple as I was hoping. Ran into a few issues. Performing the upgrade I’m using a flake, so all I should have to run is: # First edit flake.nix so it points to release-23.11. nix flake update nixos-rebuild boot --flake .# (Then systemctl reboot into the new generation that includes a new kernel.) Issue #1: pinentry package changes I can’t unlock any keys using gpg-agent (hence cannot use GPG keys for accessing my password database and send signed documents).
I’ve been using Nix for a year now. It’s been going fairly well, by the way. Here are some misconceptions I’ve had to overcome to become a more productive Nixer. False: You can’t deploy Nix software to Docker or Kubernetes False. If you can push to a docker registry such as docker.io, you can deploy to Docker or Kubernetes using Nix. You can use dockerTools.buildImage to build a docker image from Nix.
Figure 1: your computer on low memory TL;DR: yes. You can throw more swap at most processes and it’ll eventually finish… Eventually. Last year I warranty-ed a Dell XPS 13 with 32 GiB of RAM, all specced out. Sidenote: I wouldn’t recommend the Dell XPS 13, at least in 4K. The laptop gets anywhere from 1-3 hours of real world usage and gets hot as most Macbooks. The Dell XPS 13 4K is not a viable product.
Recently I have begun migrating my workstation and laptop from Gentoo to NixOS. There are a great deal of tradeoffs between the two operating systems. Before going into the details, consider where I’m coming from and why I moved away from Gentoo below. Why was I running Gentoo on workstations?? This is my heuristic for a good operating system: The Distro must provide facility to modify system packages and maintain their modifications in sync with the upstream distro.